As a kid of the 80s I grew up in a glorious time for pop culture legends. From amazing Saturday morning cartoons to iconic movies, I had the great fortune to grow up around a number of iconic characters, theme songs and all the related toys and merchandise that come with it. Now 35 years on I own more toys than I ever did as a kid, hey no one said just because you grow old you have to grow up. As many of you will know there are always those holy grail of toys you wanted as a kid but never got, then there are those toys you did get and they inspire fuzzy epic power ballad backed memories of Christmas mornings and birthday celebrations. Although my taste in toys is a little more linear these days, I’ve noticed over the years that I’ve been able to enjoy brick-built versions of toys I had or wanted thanks to LEGO. This has all accumulated in the construction of the Disney Castle set. But before we head to a magical Kingdom, it’s time to strap on those shoulder pads, pop on a vinyl and dig deep into that box of cereal, you only wanted for the free bike reflector as I reminisce about rebuilding my childhood, one brick at a time.
It was 1980 something and TV was filled with epic cartoon adventures, with even epicer theme songs, cinemas were showing iconic blockbusters and the air was filled with the sounds of power ballads and synth tinged songs. My toybox had an eclectic mix of toys, from Star Wars action figures to the pizza-loving Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles, with a dash of He-Man and the Ghostbusters thrown in for good measure. I had all the classic toys such as the AT-AT, the Ghostbusters Firehouse HQ, the Turtles Party Wagon, Ecto-1, Castle Greyskull and this awesome slime pit to drown He-Man and chums in. I say had as I still have them all, safely living in the loft.
Over recent years, I had the good fortune to build numerous LEGO sets, be they for review purposes or ones I have purchased myself. I’ve noticed an unusual trend amongst them, thanks to LEGO I’ve been able to build many of the toys I had or wanted as a kid with bricks. The AT-AT, the AT-ST, Ghostbusters Firehouse and Ecto-1 to name but a few. Then there are toys I wanted but never had, like a Millennium Falcon, Turtles Sewer Hideout and the Disney Castle. I was infatuated with Walt Disney films as a kid and always wanted to visit Disneyland. I had a miniature Disney park playset which had a few figures, buildings and a sad little castle. So imagine my delight when a LEGO built Disney Castle was released. I’m currently building this unique set and already memories of spending hours singing along to Disney classic have come flooding back. The set even has a number of easter eggs, offering little nods to a number of classic Disney movies.
There is one toy I had as kid which I never managed to get in LEGO form. When the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles made their brief foray in the world of LEGO, there was of course a version of the Turtles Party Van. In fact there were two versions one based on the Nickelodeon TV show and the other on the more recent godawful live action movie.